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January 26, 2023
According to an account by the Washington Post, President Donald Trump reportedly ordered the suspension of about $391 million in aid for Ukraine just days before he had the highly controversial phone call with newly elected Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky in July. Although the President has asserted that initial suspension of the aid was due to uncertainty on the necessity of such a package, as well as concerns for corruption within the Ukrainian government, controversy over the contents of the phone call have led to significant speculation on whether President Trump was instead pressuring Ukraine’s leader to investigate Democratic front-runner Joe Biden, and whether he used United States military aid as leverage. ~
This report adds significant tension to an already escalating idea of opening an impeachment inquiry against the President of the United States. According to the Los Angeles Times, these tensions arose after a whistleblower complaint spurred major controversy last week. The complaint, according to multiple news reports, “raised concerns that Trump abused his powers by pressuring the government of the former Soviet republic to investigate Hunter Biden — the former vice president’s son who did business there,” (Los Angeles Times, 2019). The Trump administration refused to hand over the complaint, which was deemed urgent and credible by the community’s inspector general, therefore breaking a congressional statute that states that the administration must do so. These tensions were then followed by an interview Sunday in which the President appeared to acknowledge that he accused former Vice President and Democratic candidate for President Joe Biden of corruption during the phone call. A significant number of Democrats called for an impeachment inquiry against Trump, and many Republicans called for the administration to hand over the complaint to congress. ~
President Trump, who was asked about his conduct Tuesday at the United Nations, denied that he had withheld aid as a means of pressuring the Ukranian President to investigate Biden, and stated that, “No, I didn’t — I didn’t do it,” (The New York Times, 2019). ~
This is Fact Based America – WE have the FACTS. YOU have the OPINIONS. What do you think about these new reports that President Trump may have explicitly pressured Ukraine’s newly elected leader to assist in damaging Biden’s election bid, using aid packages as leverage?